Dutchtown football coach and athletic director Jason Galt led the Bulldogs to an 11-2 record and quarterfinals appearance last season with only two assistant coaches that taught in the school.
One of his assistants was an ordained minister. Another assistant was a former NASCAR Nationwide driver.
So it shouldn't have been a surprise that when Dutchtown boys' basketball coach Bernie Farrell announced he wouldn't return next season,
Galt included in the job description that the next coach would serve on his football staff. Farrell gave the Bulldogs boys' basketball program undistracted guidance, and that translated into results, including the program's first state tournament appearance.
But, Farrell's exit gives Galt the opportunity to add another assistant to his program, one that is starting to turn the corner into sustainable success. If he can hire a basketball coach, while gain another assistant coach for his football staff, he must, and he isn't alone.
Stockbridge football coach and athletic director Kevin Whitley used the same formula when former boys' basketball coach Duane Kelley resigned recently. He hired Tucker defensive coordinator and basketball assistant Bryan Lamar to replace Kelley, adding a top-notch football assistant to Whitley's staff. Mundy's Mill football coach and AD
Peniel Dany knows he'll have a boys' basketball coach position to fill next season, and coaching on his football staff will come with the job description.
The days of coaching specialization are on hiatus in the Southern Crescent. Multi-tasking now comes with any coaching job description. And that's the way it's going to be for the foreseeable future with school system budgets strained by current economic forces.
Take Galt's circumstances. His task is to find a boys' basketball head coach and football assistant, but he's handcuffed by what teaching positions are available for next school year. He has to have someone certified to teach Math or English. So his options are severely limited from the start.
But that doesn't mean the situation is doomed. Countless basketball coaches have other responsibilities at their school. There's Union Grove boys' coach Russ Atkins, whose also been an assistant football coach for years; Riverdale boys' coach Derick Powell, who also coaches volleyball; or Dutchtown girls' coach April Tate, who is also an assistant on the track and field team, just to name a few.
Lamar becomes the latest, and Dutchtown's next boys' coach will join him.
Brian Paglia covers sports for the Clayton News Daily and Henry Daily Herald. He can be reached at email@example.com, or follow him on Twitter @BrianPaglia.